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Tag Archives: Home Sales

Existing-Home Sales Continue to Spiral Down

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) calculated an adjusted annualized sales rate of 4.90 million for existing homes last month, representing a drop from 5.12 million in October and 4.96 million in November 2012. According to the group, it was the first time in 29 months that sales fell below year-ago levels. Singling out single-family home sales, transactions were at an adjusted pace of 4.32 million, down 3.8 percent month-over-month and 0.9 percent year-over-year.

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December Sees Promising Jump in Builder Confidence

According to the National Association of Home Builders' (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), builder sentiment picked up in December to end the year at 58. The index first climbed to that level in August before falling to 57 in September and 54 in October and November. After struggling through most of the year's first half, the headline index climbed above the 50 mark in June for the first time since 2006; it has stayed in the 50-range ever since.

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Increasing Housing Permits Indicate Stability

Growing amounts of housing permits, improving home prices, and positive job numbers are leading to a stabilized housing market according to analysts. Recent studies revealed that markets in 54 out of the approximately 350 metro areas nationwide returned to or exceeded their last normal levels of economic and housing activity, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/First American Leading Markets Index (LMI). However, policymakers still need to watch their footing.

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Mortgage Rates Rise in Response to Positive Economic Indicators

Long-term mortgage rates saw a jump this week following better-than-expected economic reports. Freddie Mac released Thursday the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey, putting the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) at a rate of 4.46 percent (0.5 point) for the week ending December 5, up from 4.29 percent last week. Frank Nothaft, VP and chief economist for Freddie Mac, pinned the increases on encouraging growth in private jobs and new home sales.

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Fed Reports Slowdown in Real Estate Amid Modest Economic Growth

Fed

Modest to moderate economic growth continues to be the theme at the Federal Reserve, which released on Wednesday its Beige Book tracking expansion across its 12 districts from October through mid-November. The Fed reported improvements in residential real estate activity in Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, and San Francisco, with slower single-family home sales softening real estate in most of the remaining districts.

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October New Home Sales Speed to Fastest Pace in Six Months

Sales of new single-family homes were at an estimated seasonally adjusted annual pace of 354,000 in September, Census and HUD reported. In October, the sales pace picked up to an estimated 444,000, an increase of 25.4 percent month-over-month and 21.6 percent year-over-year. As of month's end, the seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale for 183,000, representing a 4.9 month supply at the current sales rate, the agencies reported.

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Buyer Competition Undeterred by October Shutdown

Despite a softening market, competition among buyers remained fairly fierce in October, Redfin reported in its Real-Time Bidding Wars release for the month. Last month, 55.9 percent of offers written by the brokerage's agents faced competition from other buyers, a decline from 58.3 percent in September. Bidding wars have been on a downward slope since peaking at 79 percent in February. Even with the decline, though, competition last month was higher than expected, given the effects of the government shutdown on consumer confidence.

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